Top Economists Say Recovery Has Begun

April 10, 2009

Here’s a story this week from CNN Money. We hope that the economy is in recovery and the housing market improves, especially in the Baker City real estate market. As we’ve stated before, this may be a generational opportunity for buyers – low interest rates and good prices that will not last long if the economy is in recovery. If you are a seller, just remember that everything is relative. You are getting the deal on your purchase rather than on the sale end. And with interest rates, you come out ahead.

Baker City is still a desirable place to live, and even a small improvement in regional real estate is going to lead to increasing sales and increasing prices. Economic recovery will also see the end of lower interest rates, and projections are showing that we are heading for much higher rates in the coming years. If you are thinking about buying a house, now may be the time to do it.

Here’s the article:

Economic recovery is about making people feel more confident, says Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Economy.com.

Zandi evidenced increasing home sales and gains in the stock market are some promising signs that the worst is over and people will start spending again.

“We’re starting to see some pent-up demand for goods,” he says.

But Zandi warns that the situation is still fragile. “Confidence is a very fickle thing. It can go from abject pessimism that pervades now to a more balanced view of the world rather quickly.”

Robert Brusca of FAO Economics is predicting strong growth in the last half of the year and a quick recovery for the labor market. “You’ve lost 5 million jobs. It shouldn’t be hard to put 2.5 million jobs back on rather quickly after you hit bottom,” he said.

Joseph Carson, chief economist at AllianceBernstein, calls improving home sales, a rising stock market, and better-than-expected retail sales in February and March good signs of a turnaround. By the time President Obama’s stimulus package takes effect, the economy will be ready, he says.

“The stimulus has a much better chance of working if trends are already turning up than if it needs to halt a decline,” he said.

Source: CNNMoney, Chris Isidore (04/06/2009)

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8 Ways to Spruce Up Your Listing’s Curb Appeal

April 6, 2009

In today’s Baker City real estate market, anything a seller can do to improve a property’s saleability improves the chances of attracting a buyer. Here’s a quick Seller’s Tip from the Wall Street Journal:

Staging a yard can give a home the all-important, buyer-pleasing curb appeal. Here are some suggestions that are both inexpensive and easy:

  • Make it green. Balancing the pH level and feeding the lawn lots of nutrients will give it a lush and healthy look.
  • Trim trees and shrubbery. Overgrown branches hide a home’s good looks.
  • Mulch everything. Mulch gives flowerbeds visual appeal.
  • Edge the beds. Edging makes everything look neat.
  • Powerwash the siding, sidewalks, and patios. Power washing gets rid of all the winter grunge.
  • Plant annuals. Lots of geraniums, impatients, and petunias brighten up the look.
  • Plant a garden. If the Obama’s can do it, so can everyone else.
  • Hang a hammock. It suggests life is easy.

Source: The Wall Steet Journal, June Fletcher (04/03/2009)